BrewHorn: An App To Match Beer to Drinker

BrewHorn craft beer app

When it comes to apps and beer, I haven’t found many that are worthy of precious space on my iPhone, aside from Untappd. Untappd is sorta like Foursquare for beers. Check into your beer (and your location if you want), rate it, maybe take a pic, and send it off to Facebook and Twitter. I’m currently working on the Legendary badge, which requires checking in to 500 distinct beers. That may take a while…

While I enjoy it, what about a beer app that’s a little more useful? Like when I’m at the beer store and have no idea if any of the unfamiliar brews are worth trying. Talking to an employee usually helps, but how well do they really know your tastes? I’m also frequently bombarded by my friends and family to recommend them beer. Not an easy task when I have no idea what they like and the only information they give me is, “Recommend a good beer and uh, nothing too bitter.” Well, let me prattle off about 100 different options that meet your criteria. Thanks for not being vague!

BrewHorn craft beer app

Courtesy of BrewHorn.com

Now, enter in what I hope will be the quintessential app for any beer drinker: BrewHorn–”If the brew fits, drink it.” The gist is you enter a beer and the app tells you if said beer fits your taste profile. Unfortunately, their app hasn’t launched so I don’t know all the details, other than what I learned from reading about it at The Beer Babe’s blog. According to her post, BrewHorn will launch a demo at the end of this month at the Beer Bloggers Conference in Boston. In order to make this app work, there will first be a community phase in which to build a beer database. Once the database has grown, thanks to all our drinking efforts, the app will then be able to have a recommendation feature.

I’ve signed myself up on their mailing list, and maybe I’ll be lucky enough to be a beta tester. Stay tuned as more information rolls in.

The Rise of the Cans

canned beer revolution

canned beer revolutionAnyone following the trends of craft beer has certainly noticed the rise–and overall acceptance–of canned beer. I’ll be the first to admit I didn’t see myself, or the majority of beer drinkers for that matter, accepting a canned beer. Who could blame us? With paltry predecessors like Bud, Coors, PBR, and Keystone, canned beer seemed doomed to remain a choice only needed for shotgunning.

But get excited, my friends, because we are right in the middle of what is being dubbed the “Canned Beer Revolution!” Why cans? Why now? For years craft brewers believed canned beer offered a diminished taste when compared to bottles. The myth of the metallic-tasting beer has been debunked, and as always, retro is in. Besides the taste being equally–if not better in some cases–as good and intoxicating, canned beer is hipster, er…I mean eco-friendly because it’s easier to recycle and requires less packaging. Purists and those concerned with skunking will appreciate the locked in flavor because light can’t penetrate cans and the seal is tighter than a bottle cap. Although, it is more fun to collect bottle caps than tabs.

My introduction to canned beer was twofold: Dale’s Pale Ale and Butternuts Porkslap. Both cans were on-hand at a soiree in my apartment. Okay, we were actually playing Cards Against Humanity whilst getting drunk and eating far too much Chinese food and dip. Thanks to the sorta-expert beer knowledge of my BFF’s boyfriend, my skeptical self was introduced to both beers that evening. Dale’s Pale Ale actually has the esteemed honor of beginning this so-called revolution, even if its intentions weren’t such. Not only has it been rated one of the best canned beers numerous times over, it’s been rated one of the best beers period.

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Calling All NYC Women in Beer

Love beer? Have double X chromosomes? Then join a room full of estrogen and beer at the first New York City Women in Beer event on Monday, February 27th! It’s difficult enough for some to take our craft beer guzzling ways seriously, so let’s get together with like-minded individuals. The event will take place at Taproom 307 (you remember that awesome little joint, right?). The event is meant to be a way to not only network with other women in the beer industry, but to socialize with some chicks who appreciate a good beer. All women who work or are involved in the industry are encouraged to attend, including: bar & restaurant staff, beer store & homebrew store staff, brewery staff, distributors & importers, writers & bloggers, PR & marketing professionals, and event planners.

The event is free but it is asked that you RSVP. Feel free to stop by any time between 6:30-8:30pm that evening and grab a draft for only $5. For more information and to reserve a spot, click here.

MMMhop IPA, Why Do the Hanson Brothers Have a Beer?!

Yeah we all remember that annoyingly catchy song from way back in the day. But did you know these three brothers are still around, like actually making music? They have 8 studio albums and believe it or not, they’re married! I guess they were all boys after all…But onto the semi interesting bit of news. They made a beer. It’s called MMMhop…*insert laugh here* Oh and it’s an IPA. That’s about the extent of that exciting news. The band apparently wants to create a brand for themselves. *read as selling out* Drummer Zac Hanson told reporters, “We of course make records, they are fundamental to what we do, but we wanted to create a brand so that our fans have a greater experience.”

If their music and bad haircuts are any indication about the quality of the beer, we’re all in for a real treat! Yeah that was sarcasm.

Beer Is All You Need for Hurricane Irene

I’m reporting to you live from Flushing, Queens where we’re less than a day away from Hurricane Irene. This ho had to go and ruin all my party plans…okay I didn’t have much in the way of plans this weekend but she still forced me to evacuate my home. For those who don’t know me, I live on the south shore of Long Island and was ordered to leave. Some brave souls on my block are choosing to stay. Honestly, I don’t think my home will really be damaged but I did move all my important electronics to the second floor and got rid of anything off the floor.

I don’t anticipate my home being destroyed but still one wants to be safe. How do you decide within 24 hours what’s most important to you? Besides clothing, I took my two external hard drives, this shitty laptop so I can feel “connected” to the world, my stuffed panda, and my limited edition Lady Gaga album. (Yeah I know I’m a loser. But heaven forbid my home really was destroyed, I’d be devastated if it was lost to the horrors of this wench of a storm.)

But I knew I couldn’t very well leave without beer. I’m a beer blogger damn it! I had a bottle of Chimay Blue for months in my fridge. I know, I know, how could I not drink that by now? It’s a large bottle and I can’t down it all myself. So now it’s here sitting in my Aunt and Uncle’s refrigerator waiting to be slowly sipped and enjoyed. I shall most likely partake in it tonight. What better way to distract from the storm and not think about my kitties left behind at home than to get drunk?

I hope everyone else on the East Coast managed to pick up a few bottles of their favorite ales and lagers before all hell breaks loose. Just like I said for the May apocalypse, there’s no right or wrong beer for times like these. But I do believe now is the time to imbibe your best beer. Might as well go out with a bang.

Stay classy San Francisco…er I mean stay safe East Coast and drink well!

I Don’t Drink Pink Beer and Neither Should You

Molson Coors Animee BeerI’m a little late in the game for this one (only by 2 weeks) but it’s time for a rant. I am a woman and I drink craft beer. I do not need fruity, pink beer to entice me to pick up a six pack. The idea that women need something bright and shiny in order to make a purchase is just down right sexist. What is this pink beer I’m talking about? Molson Coors (the wretched people who own Coors, Keystone, and Blue Moon) have decided to use some “crafty” (get it!) ninja skills to increase beer sales among women by creating pink, clear, and yellow beer. Yes the yellow one looks like piss. (Really bad marketing move on their part.)

The beers will be “sparkling and crisp” with fruity flavors added to the batch. But that’s not all! They’re also low in calories for the weight conscious woman. I have to agree with The Beer Wench that this is an insult to women’s palates. I don’t need flavors of apples and pears to find something delicious. Not to mention I’m just sick of the fact that men don’t think women can “handle” beer. [expletive deleted] I’m sorry, did we time travel back to the 1950′s? Are steak and spicy foods too manly for my dainty taste buds as well? I will not be dragged into this category nor will I be put in the butch category either because I know what good beer tastes like.

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Drinks for the Rapture

We all know the “rapture” is happening tomorrow so I figured I might as well cash in on this keyword because the word “rapture” will be great for SEO purposes! Yeah! Combining work skillz with my own blog! So let’s grab a few beers and get left behind.

Let’s sort out this terminology a bit. The Rapture refers to a bunch of lucky born-again Christians being hand picked by God to go up to heaven, leaving the rest of us sinners behind. So it’s not the same as the Apocalypse which is supposed to happen in October or 2012 or whenever the hell it is. The sinners will then have to choose to live out the rest of their lives repenting and accepting God or choosing the path of the devil. *insert spooky/eerie music here*

I’m thinking this will be great because there will be a fewer million people in the world and that means more beer for me. I’m hoping none of my favorite brewers are ultra religious though because then I’ll become a sad panda without my beer. This blog post doesn’t have much of a point other than to encourage a lot of drinking by the way.

But if I had to recommend beer for the Rapture, I would say just buy the most expensive beer that you enjoy because we might as well go out with a bang or at least enjoy our last few months on earth living in ultimate pleasure. In conclusion, I hope you all get laid and drink really amazing beer. I think I’ll crack open that bottle of Chimay Blue sitting in my fridge and blast the blasphemous tunes of Lady Gaga.

And if you need good songs to listen to tomorrow, check out my friend’s post on the “Greatest Rapture Hits.”

Long Island Craft Beer Week

Hey Long Island! Get ready for a full week of pure carbonated malty, hoppy, yeasty delight! Apparently on Long Island we don’t do just one day of craft beer, we need seven days. Well, I guess we can’t really count because craft beer week is actually lasting 10 days, May 13 through May 22nd. I forgive our poor math skills because it works in our favor.

The week isn’t just dedicated to our hard working, and really amazing, local breweries. It’s also about uniting bars, restaurants, retailers, and business partners with all of the beer lovers on the island. This is our first craft beer week and it’s jam packed with events throughout Nassau and Suffolk county. Some of the special events include Breakfast with the Brewers (at Carlyle On The Green in Farmingdale), SimulCask (the simultaneous tapping of several casks all over the island), and the Golden Tap Awards Gala (at Boulton Center in Bayshore).

There are dozens of events going on the entire week and just looking at the list is making me drool. I won’t go into detail about everything, so check out the official events page here. A few are already sold out, other events are free, like the WBAB Beer Party. Many of your favorite bars and restaurants will have local brewers bringing rare taps for the evening. My very own watering hole Effin Gruven will have the boys from Blue Point Brewery on the 19th.

This is going to be a really exciting week for Long Islanders. For once, we have something awesome going on. Depending on funds and the willingness of friends, I’ll try to make it to a few events and report back on all the beer shenanigans.

Craft Brewer Up for James Beard Award

We beer lovers often get snubbed by the general public, foodies, and snoody wine drinkers. We’re kicked off to the side and stereotyped as fat men living in a van DOWN BY THE RIVER! I’m not a man nor am I fat and I live by the ocean dammit! But today we can celebrate a victory! For the second year in a row, a craft beer brewer has been nominated for a James Beard Award. For those who aren’t chefs or Food Network or Top Chef watchers, the James Beard Foundation is like the Grammy’s or Oscars for the food industry.

This year’s nominee is Sam Calagione of Dogfish Craft Brewery. He is nominated in the Outstanding Wine and Spirits Professional category. Kind of shocking since the word beer isn’t in there…I mean beer is only the oldest alcoholic beverage and ranks number 3 for most popular beverage, but what do I know? Garrett Oliver of Brooklyn Brewery (big up to Brooklyn!) was nominated last year, making him the first brewer ever nominated for this highly highly prestigious award.

Calagione is most likely nominated thanks to his hit show on the Discovery Channel, Brewmasters. I feel so ashamed because I had no idea this show existed. I’ll make sure to do some research and hopefully catch a few episodes so I can report back to you. Any loyal followers catch this show?

I’m going to be perfectly frank, I hope Calagione kicks those winemakers’ asses and takes one home for the team. No disrespect to wine. I love wine. But I love beer more and I think we’re all a little tired of defending our drink of choice. The award show will take place on May 9. If he wins, party at my house with plenty of Dogfish ale. And by party I mean only 5 of my closest friends jammed in my room. I wish him luck!

NY Craft Beer and Food Festival

Attention all beer lovers, (which should be everyone who reads this blog), there will be a beer and food festival in NYC next month. I must thank my brother for informing me about this amazing event. Tons of beer on tap + food = good! For those interested in drinking yourselves silly with some of the finest beer, you can attend the festival on March 19 and March 20th. The festival will be held in the Flatiron District and it’s all you can drink and eat for a 3 hour session.

Both days there will be a session from 12-3pm, 5-8pm, and a special VIP session from 4-8pm. The VIP session will have very rare and limited quantities of beer and food. Tickets are $65 and VIP tickets are $80. So far there are about 80 cask beers available. Your ticket will allow you to sample all the beer and receive a souvenir glass, taste food from at least 20 restaurants and food trucks, and give you access to brewery discussion panels. It’s a little pricey, but consider all the amazing beer and food you have at your disposal. It ain’t too shabby.

Some of the breweries that will be represented include, Stone Brewing, Flying Dog, Riverhorse Brewing, Smuttynose Brewing, Weyerbacher Brewing, and Blue Point. I’m not going to lie, I got a little excited as I read the list. Stay up to date on the brewers and beers here and check out the list of restaurants here. Tickets are selling fast so make sure you check out Get Real NY’s website to order your tickets.

Money is a little tight for me now, but I’m going to do my best to make it out there! I am fully willing to take donations so I can make some really awesome posts about the experience. Support your local beer drinkers!